The Central Stags have missed out on the playoffs for the Dream Super Smash after Sunday's match between the Wellington Firebirds and Auckland Aces did not go their way at the Basin Reserve.

Clinging onto third place after their nine-wicket loss to the Otago Volts in Dunedin on Saturday, the Stags, captained by former Wanganui player Tom Bruce, needed table leaders Wellington to beat Auckland.

However, after the Firebirds made 165-7, the Aces reached 166-4 with two overs to spare.

The Aces will now play either the Firebirds or the Volts in the elimination final on Friday, depending on the result of the Volts last round robin game with the Canterbury Kings tomorrow.

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The grand final is on Sunday.